Significant Economic and Technology Benefits
MON can answer its own question from just four days ago – Finland has, indeed, selected the F-35 LIGHTNING II to fulfil its HX fighter aircraft requirement.
Finland will receive 64 F-35A multi-role aircraft with a robust package of advanced weapons, spares and technical support, plus what manufacturer Lockheed Martin describes as “a sustainment solution tailored to Finalnd’s unique security of supply requirements,” and comprehensive training. Observers close to the HX evaluation programme reports that the LIGHTNING II won on criteria of capability and survivability, while also scoring very highly in affordability.
“The F-35 will provide Finnish industries unique digital capabilities that leverage 5th-generation engineering and manufacturing. The production work will continue for more than 20 years, and the F-35 sustainment work will continue into the 2070s,” commented Bridget Lauderdale, VP/GM of the F-35 Program at Lockheed Martin.
The F-35 selection will deliver economic and technical advantages to Finland for decades to come. Finnish industry will have many first-of-a-kind opportunities to work directly on F-35 production and sustainment. Through indirect industrial participation projects outside of F-35 production, Lockheed Martin will build industry partnerships with Finnish companies and academic institutions that offer opportunities focused on developing and advancing security partnerships far into the future.